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South Florida Jamaican author Tracey Jackson celebrates her ‘Jamerican’ heritage with her new novella, From Yaad!

If South Florida Author and Meet the World Image Solutions client Tracey Jackson has her say, those who read her new book From Yaad!, released Jan. 31, 2019, will see Jamaica and the Caribbean experience in a whole new light.

Being of Jamaican heritage and growing up in the United States, Jackson said she often experienced a world many Americans may never experience or understand. Navigating school and social life in English, but coming home to a household filled with Patois. Explaining to friends and acquaintances the difference between being an Afro-Caribbean and an African American. Navigating negative stereotypes filled with references to “ganja,” dreadlocks, and Reggae music.

Jackson said she knew a different reality, one filled with love, beauty, and pride. Her parents, both from Jamaica, encouraged her to pursue excellence, which she found through books at school. She said she devoured books by the likes of Maya Angelou, Cornel West, Langston Hughes, and others. However, finding books that reflected the Caribbean experience was challenging.

“Growing up, I read endlessly about the African American experience through fiction and non-fiction because that was all that was available to me in the mainstream bookstores and libraries in America,” she explained. “I always wondered if the Jamaican experience (outside of beaches, Reggae, and marijuana) would ever be poetically written in a book that was available every and anywhere.”

Finding few of these books, the speaker and technology consultant decided to add author to her list of titles in an effort to share the untold stories of the African-American and Caribbean-American experience while featuring positive characters with captivating stories. Besides From Yaad!, she now has four published works, including Impressions, a book of poetry; From the Valley to the Mountaintop - Lessons from the Journey, an inspirational work; and her first full-length fiction novel, The Summer of Chances, released in late 2018.

“I hope to successfully make my contribution about the island and its diaspora to the mainstream book industry so people can see that we have our own pivotal stories to tell against the richness of our culture,” she said.

She set out to do just that with From Yaad!, which tells the story of a young Jamaican-American professional who finds herself torn between her sensible career in New York, and the possibilities of taking over her deceased father’s villa in Jamaica, a land she hadn’t experienced since childhood. Although she is from Yaad, which is slang for Jamaica, she finds that she still has much to learn about herself, friendship, family, and duty.

“My stories are about the everyday man and woman,” Jackson said. “I want people to be able to see themselves, their friends, and family in my writing. My approach is a bit more everyday prose than the traditional. I've run into a lot of people who just want to read a book and get it. I figure, this is an area where I can play around and experiment. So far, so good!”

From Yaad! is available for $3.99 on Amazon Kindle. For more information, contact Jackson at fromyaadstory(at)gmail(dot)com or Meet the World Image Solutions at info(at)mtwimagesolutions(dot)com.

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